Library Journal just posted an excellent article, Minnesota Librarians Soon To Take a Seat at State Workforce Development Council. Kit Hadley, St. Paul Public Library director, and Chris Olson, MELSA director, are quoted. A report of the Minnesota Library Association is referenced.
The opening lines are attention-getters:
“Politicians at all levels of government — from Washington to county executives — may finally be catching on that public libraries are the backbone of workforce development. Minnesota has been leading the way, becoming in May the first state in the country to add a public library advisor to a state Workforce Development Council.”
The Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State (SOS) posted this open appointment vacancy in its September 2011 Open Appointments Press Release (.doc). Application instructions are available on their site as well. According to the official press release, “Applications submitted by September 27, 2011 are assured of full consideration by the appointing authority.”
This is an important opportunity for Minnesota, and the LJ article covers it well. This is an article to read and share with colleagues and policy and decision-makers.
When posting an article about the Twin Cities Antiquarian and Rare Book Fair, MinnPost included an intriguing left sidebar panel. The sidebar list, “Minnesota Libraries Most-Borrowed Books,” includes reports from nine library systems. It is reprinted here with MinnPost permission.
We asked Minnesota public libraries for their top-circulating titles. Here are the most-checked-out adult and teen books around the state.
data for 2008-2010
1. Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich
2. Twelve Sharp by Janet Evanovich
3. Plum Lovin’ by Janet Evanovich
data for 2003-2010
1. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
1. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
data for 1999-2010
1. Duluth: An Illustrated History of the Zenith City by Glen N. Sandvik
2. Duluth: Sketches of the Past edited by Ryck Lydecker, Lawrence J. Sommer & Arthur Larsen
3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
data for 2010
1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
2. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson
3. Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich
1. The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan
GREAT RIVER REGIONAL LIBRARY
(BENTON, MORRISON, SHERBURNE, STEARNS, TODD and WRIGHT COUNTIES)
data for 2004-2010
1. True Believer by Nicholas Sparks
2. Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult
3. Dear John by Nicholas Sparks
1. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
2. Summer of the Sea Serpent by Mary Pope Osborne
3. Haunted Castle on Hallows Eve by Mary Pope Osborne
data for 1985-2010
1. Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson
2. For My Daughters by Barbara Delinsky
3. The Last Resort by Dan Binchy
1. Knights of the Kitchen Table by Jon Scieszka
2. Arthur’s Mystery Envelope by Marc Brown
3. The Not-So-Jolly Roger by Jon Scieszka
data for 1999-2010
1. Saint Paul: The First 150 Years by Virginia Brainard Kunz
2. The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman
3. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
data for 2010
1. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
2. The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown
3. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
1. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
2. The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
3. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
data for 2004-2010
1. While My Pretty One Sleeps by Mary Higgins Clark
2. Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer
3. Bitter Sweet by LaVyrle Spencer
Reprinted with permission.
MinnPost, 6.19.2011 – left sidebar, scroll down to view list
If you are a fan of Minnesota Public Radio and its nationally-recognized Midmorning program, you’ll appreciate that an hour was dedicated this week to interviews of two Minnesota public library directors. For a fascinating, energetic conversation between MPR interviewer, Greg Vandegriff, and Lois Langer Thompson, director of the Hennepin County Library, and Kit Hadley, director of the St. Paul Public Library, listen to the 56-minute program audio, Changing Technology and the Future of Libraries, from 12/21/2010.
Kit: “There’s no question that books are the brand of libraries, but I don’t think they’ve ever been our real business. And I think our real business has always been about learning, supporting education, and sort of community gathering. And in that way, what happens in our libraries today is very similar to what happened 125 years ago.” (2:00)
Lois: “When we open a library, the community turns out in droves for the physical space. And so, we cannot build libraries big enough. Even in this computer age, there’s some of the isolation and some of the coming together that people still long for. Often in a community, the library is the one place that everyone can go to. You don’t have to buy something, you don’t have to believe something, you don’t have to sign up. You can come in and spend time and discover.” (3:35)
Question from listener: Why should taxpayers fund libraries when the marketplace offers so many way to get information or entertainment? (34:45)
Lois: “Democracy and neutrality.” [Listen for more from Lois.]
Kit: “Free access to information as a cornerstone of democracy is very fundamental. And commercial control of information is just not the same thing.”
Other favorite segments to listen to if you have some time:
Howard Besser quoted on four core missions of a public library (2:40)
What about the digital divide? (5:16)
Is there a future for librarians? Changing roles (36:00)
Feel free to post your own favorite quotes or comments here, in the comment area. If a full transcript is posted or created, I’ll let you know!
Turning the Page: Building Your Library Community, a PLA national advocacy training program, is now available online free-of-charge to members of the American Library Association (ALA).
According to the PLA website, “The program…is designed to equip librarians and library supporters with the skills, confidence, and resources they need to create community partnerships, build alliances with local and regional decision makers, and ultimately increase funding for their libraries.” “Through the generosity of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Turning the Page online is now available to all ALA members absolutely free of charge!” Visit the site to register!
Washington County Library (Pat Conley, Director) and Carver County Library (Melissa Brechon, Director) received a federally-funded LSTA grant, administered by State Library Services last year. See “Two Public Libraries Extend Lending Methods”, Streaming News, August 2010.
Yesterday the Wall Street Journal wrote an article about their idea of putting book lockers in heavily used public centers distant from a public library, notably Hugo, MN. For a thought-provoking article, read New Library Technologies Dispense With Librarians, WSJ.com, 10/25/2010.
Patrons love the new service and circulation is high. To read the referenced Library Journal opinion piece, written by James R. Lund, Director, Red Wing Public Library, MN, click here, A Vending Library Is No Library (4/15/2010).
Check out the Dave Granlund cartoon on budget cuts to public libraries.
Granlund cartoon: Library budget cuts
Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch, June 7, 2010
PALS maintained an integrated online library system for Minnesota’s colleges and university libraries and more for many years. Moving with the times, they are promoting the open-source system, Evergreen. ECRL (East Central Regional Library) is the first regional public library system in Minnesota to adopt the Evergreen catalog. The public is invited to the official launch today in Cambridge.
To the Minnesota Library Community,
East Central Regional Library and PALS are pleased to announce our new partnership in providing the Evergreen catalog to patrons in east central Minnesota. You can have a peek at:
We will have an official ribbon-cutting on Wednesday afternoon, May 26th at 2:00 p.m. at ECRL Headquarters in Cambridge MN. We’d be pleased if you’d join us (if you’re able) for the first official Minnesota Evergreen launch, complete with coffee and cookies (you betcha)!
Barbara Misselt, ECRL Director
Stephen Elfstrand, PALS Director
So far this is one of my favorite handouts on the value of libraries to our communities. This is easy to look at and conveys unexpected information, gathered from reputable reseach. Share with staff, trustees, decision-makers, the community!
How Libraries Stack Up: 2010 (April 2010)
If you want to make a powerpoint presentation, two templates are available for your use. See Downloads column on right side of page. No need to register.
For more information, see: http://www.oclc.org/reports/stackup/
Thanks to Karla Gedell, Minnesota Attorney General Library, for sharing this news item.
“The current issue of Session Weekly [5/13/2010] has “Public Libraries” as the topic of its Minnesota Index. Among other statistics, it compares the largest public library system in the state (Hennepin County Library System) with one of the smallest (McKinley Public Library).”
The Minnesota Index provides a one-page summary of selected statistics. For those who like detail, the state and regional compilation of the official 2008 Minnesota Public Library Statistics is available on the State Library Services website.
Fyi—“Session Weekly is a nonpartisan publication of Minnesota House of Representatives Public Information Services.” – website
In tough times, people try to do quite a few things for themselves, including legal work. The services provided by open-to-the-public, county law libraries are profiled in a great article in today’s Star Tribune.
The new legal aid: Do it yourself
Minneapolis Star Tribune, 4/20/10
In bad economic times, public law libraries boom with visitors needing legal advice. Do-it-yourself legal work has become the way, from bankruptcy filings to fighting an eviction.
Librarians referenced or quoted:
Susan Larson, Minnesota State Law Library, which coordinates county law library service
Sara Galligan, Ramsey County Law Library (MN)
Gene Myers, Anoka County Law Library (MN)
Judy Meadows, Montana State Library
If you are looking for a county law library near you, check out the Minnesota County Law Library Directory. If you are asked to assist patrons with legal questions and could use some direction, take a look at Legal Reference and “Do It Yourself” Resources (Guest Blogger, Sara Galligan).